Ayacucho

Ayacucho is in the Southern Sierra region of Peru. The population is about 100,000, altitude 2,700 m. Ayacucho is embedded in a broad sunny valley with mild climate. It is home of the Morocucho people, a group of the Quechua.

Understand

During the 80's and early 90's, Ayacucho was mostly under control of the Sendero Luminoso, an extreme leftist terrorist group. After the successful anti-terror fights under president Fujimori, the influence of the Sendero Luminoso decreased almost completely. In the recent years, some singular activities have come up again. The area of Ayacucho is declared as zona de emergencia (emergency zone), but the only practical restriction for normal tourists seems to be the recommendation not to travel in the area during night time.

The Tourist Office is found in the Plaza de Armas.

Get in

The Airport has flights from Lima. Small airlines in Peru are a bit sketchy, but a good alternative for those who don't like a rough long bus ride.

Daily buses to and from Lima on a well paved road. (11h) - It goes over a high mountain passes which make some people sick

Daily buses to and from Pisco the same well paved road. (6h)

Daily buses/colectivos to and from Huancavelica offer 3 alternatives (note: dirt roads may be impassible in the rainy season):

  1. The direct way via colectivo to Julcamarca, a second colectivo to Lircay, and a third colectivo to Huancavelica (all dirt roads). With luck and an early start, you could make it through in one day. Basic accommodation is available in Julcamarca and Lircay, if necessary.
  2. Via Rumichaca and St. Ines. Take a morning bus along the main road from Ayacucho to the coast until Rumichaca (paved and in good condition), and then catch a bus to Huancavelica (departure 10:30 AM, dirt road). The landscape is unique and impressive, most of it is between 4000 and 5000 m above sea level.
  3. Take the morning bus to Huancayo, get off at Izuchaca (8-10 hours) where the dirt road becomes paved, and then catch onward local transport to Huancavelica (~1 hour).

The above three options also work in reverse. However, the bus from Huancavelica to Rumichaca leaves at 4:30 AM.

Daily buses to and from Andahuaylas, run by Molina, Wari (leaves at 5AM) and others (at least 10 rough hours). The dust road is partly in very poor condition, but the magnificent scenery is more than a compensation for that.

Get around

Taxis run for 3 Soles (1US$) in the city.

Do

Willy Del Posa Posa runs a Tourist Agency Near the Plaza de Armas. He proved honest and helpful on a few occasions.

Buy

Eat

Try Puka Picante (Potatoes cooked with beetroot and peanuts) and Papa con Quapchi (potatoes with cheese and herbs) in the market or little restaurants.

Drink

Try chicha de manis (peanut-sesame), agua de nipero or manzana (apple) for 0.5 S, in the market (right of the big red arc, Jr 28 de Julio)

Sleep

On the road towards the bus station, some places offer nice but simple double rooms for less than 20 soles, and 13 soles for the use of only one bed.

You can stay at the Plaza Hotel for as long as you need.

During Semana santa, the prices increase crazily. You can contact Leira Figuero 990454539, at the cross between Jr Callao and Venezuela. They rent a mattress on the floor for 10 soles (6 can enter), in a small room with WC, cold shower, and your own key.

Go next

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Sunday, January 17, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.